15 Free Open Source PHP Forum Software

June 20th, 2012 by aditia rahman / 6 Comments  


Before the era of social networking a forum / bulletin board software is becoming the first choice for website owners to gathered its community, but untill today there are still many forum software continue in development, cause they already have loyal user.

A forum software today usually used by specific interest community like a cms forum, linux forum, web development forum, internet marketing forum, etc. This post shows several ready to use forum software based on PHP that might be can be one of your choice to building a community site.


bbPress is forum software from the creators of WordPress. bbPress engaging community to be integrated with your WordPress powered website or blog.



From the look of it design, really descibing it self, this forum software try to be as minimal, simple, fast and modern but still have the essential features for a forum, including some of plugins.



FluxBB is designed as a lighter, faster alternative to some of the traditional feature heavy forum applications. FluxBB is a fork of PunBB. In 2007 PunBB was sold to a commercial company.



FUDforum (Fast Uncompromising Discussion Forum) includes i18n and templating support allowing for a complete customization. Also act as a Mailing List Manager, USENET newsreader and even an XML Feed Aggregator.

FUD Forums


miniBB aiming to be lite, simple and stable message board, but I found it hard to install cause when I tested the latest version doesn’t have a web installer yet, which means we have to install manual by editing the source.



DevBB was the predecessor to MyBB, a temporary solution for people to use whilst MyBB was being developed, nad now MyBB still continue to be developed.



Started in 1998, Phorum was the original PHP and MySQL based Open Source forum software.



phpBB is a free flat-forum bulletin board software solution, that becoming one of the most popular forum software.



PunBB is a fast and lightweight PHP-powered discussion board.


Simple Machines Forum

SMF is a free, professional grade software package that allows you to set up your own online community within minutes.

Simple Machine Forum


UseBB 1 is a light and Open Source PHP 4 and MySQL based forum package, distributed freely under the GPL license. UseBB 2 is a future PHP 5 based community system.


Wikid Forum

Wikid Forum

XMB Forum


Simple Press

A forum software inspired by wordpress.


Vanilla Forum

Vanilla provides hosted and open source community forum software that powers discussion forums on 546,830 sites. Built for flexibility and integration.

Vanilla Forums Community

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  • I’ve been browsing on-line more than 3 hours lately, yet I never discovered any fascinating article like yours. It is pretty worth enough for me. In my view, if all webmasters and bloggers made good content material as you probably did, the net might be much more useful than ever before.

    • Dinajpur says:

      I’ve to agree with you. Very few articles are found on forum software. Goodluck to me, I’ve discovered this. I was up to a webmaster type discussion board. I would consider trying few of the top you mentioned.
      thank you very much.

  • Helpful info. Fortunate me I discovered your site by accident, and
    I’m stunned why this coincidence did not took place earlier! I bookmarked it.

  • Vida Sana says:

    I use to work with SMF. But SMF and phpBB look the same as 4-5 years ago. Forum software didnt evolve. I think I gonna try Vanilla or MyBB for my new projects.

  • wparena says:

    This is an awesome list you have compiled! I had come across it when working on tutorial about responsive themes and was impressed not just with the resources, but with all other useful links you built for it. Great work!!!

  • SoketeerO says:

    Condivido assolutamente con le idee espresse ancora. Continuate in questo modo.

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